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NFL Notes: Saints, Titans, Vikings

Saints

  • Mike Triplett of ESPN writes that the new four-year, $94 million contract extension Alex Smith signed with the Redskins upon being traded to Washington is unlikely to be the kind of contract Drew Brees receives this offseason, even though Smith and Brees have the same agent.
  • According to Triplett, Brees could secure a larger salary than Smith’s $23.25 million per year but it’s unlikely he’ll receive anywhere close to the $71 million guaranteed he got from the Redskins.
  • According to Triplett, the Saints want to pay Brees one year at a time, considering that he’s 39 years old and Brees has been willing to go this route. With this in mind, Triplett says there’s no reason to expect things to change now, even though Brees is in line to be an unrestricted free agent in the coming months.
  • In the end, Triplett expects the two parties to agree to a one- or two-year deal worth around $25 million per year.

Titans

  • Jim Wyatt says that Titans WR Tajae Sharpe has recovered from the injury that led to him being placed on injured reserve and he’ll be good to go for the start of offseason work.

Vikings

During ESPN’s 30 for 30 film “The Two Bills,” Bill Belichick explains that he considered taking over as the Viking’ defensive coordinator before turning down the job to remain with the Giants.

“(The Vikings) called me and they said, ‘Would you be interested in coming up here and working for the Vikings?’ ” Belichick said, via the Pioneer Press. “And so I talked to Bill, and Bill said, ‘You know what, we’re on shaky ground here. If you want to go, go ahead; do what you want to do.’ ”

“That probably is what made me want to stay more than anything. And so I came back and said Bill, ‘I’m not going to Minnesota and I want to be here and I want to do everything I can to make this work.’

Former Vikings coach Les Steckel explained what happened from his point of view with Belichick.

“I knew Bill was an extremely bright guy,” said Steckel. “So I told him I wanted to hire him as the defensive coordinator, and he knew Floyd Reese from when he had been in Detroit (as an assistant from 1976-77). So we flew Bill to Minnesota.”

“He said he wanted to meet with several more people in the organization, and here’s the punch line that no one knows about,” Steckel said. “He went back to his hotel room that night and he said he just wanted to mull things over. The plan was we were going to meet with Bill at 8 a.m. the next day and talk about salary and those things. I thought it was a done deal.

“Then at 6 o’clock the next morning, I was up and ready to go to the office and Bill calls me. He says, ‘Les, I need to tell you something. I’m at the airport and I’m going home (to the New York area).’ I say, ‘But Bill, we haven’t even had a chance to sit down and talk yet.’ He said, ‘Les, I’ve talked to several people in the building and I would just like to say to you that you had better be alert, you had better be aware. I just don’t have a good feeling, Les.’ ”

“He just said, ‘Hopefully, you’ll see,’ ” Steckel said. “He said, ‘I don’t want to go any further, and I have to go catch this flight.’ And that was it.”